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4.03.2011

Review: Jaq's Harp by Ella Drake

Jaq's Harp by Ella Drake
SciFi Romance, Dystopian, Fairy Tale Retelling
Ebook $2.99 (CARINA PRESS)
Audio $4.95

In a world of floating islands and bio-engineered beans, the bad guys are taken down by agents of the Mother organization—agents like Jacqueline "Jaq" Robinson. Instead of accepting her next routine assignment, she sets out on a mission of her own—to destroy Giant Corp, the company responsible for her sister's wasting illness. Jaq must steal her cure from Giant's headquarters high above the city...even though she'll be brought face-to-face with Harper English, the man who left her to go deep undercover at Giant.
For Harp, Jaq had been a distraction the mercenary thought he couldn't afford. But once he sees her again, Harp knows he's made a mistake. Even though she vowed he won't have her again, it's clear they still have a powerful attraction. Harp's determined to get a second chance with Jaq—if they can escape Giant Corp and get back to solid ground in one piece...

Author Site: www.elladrake.com

Too Short to Do This Premise Justice (3 stars)

I have to say that I really can't offer a summary of the story that is any different from the blurb provided. The concept for this one was really brilliant. A sort-of fairy tale retelling of Jack and the Beanstalk with an adult science fiction twist. Unfortunately the story is quite short and thus not enough character development or backstory is provided.

Without the character development both Harp and Jaq felt flat and their romance lacked any real spark. There were hints of potential, tiny snippets of their personalities shining through but their past and the supposed passion of it is told and not shown enough for my tastes. The storyline itself feels very rushed but not in the natural way it should. Yes, there's a limited timeframe for their escape but the pacing itself didn't lend an urgency to the action which might have made it flow better. I anticipated this to be more erotic and found it didn't deliver in that department either.

Ultimately, Drake has a gift for creating a great concept and she did try to make this entertaining. I love fairy tale retellings and her idea here was really well conceived. There's a lot packed into this short story as far as potential goes but there simply was not enough word-power happening here. It needed to be longer and more detailed to really stand up as a strong read. While it was only an okay read for me I fully intend to read more from this author, her imaginative world building really got me excited and this one was just probably not the one to sell me as a devoted fan.

Other Reviews:
Rex Robot Reviews
Babbling About Books, and More!


Notes: Received Review Copy via NetGalley.

2 comments:

Melissa (Books and Things) said...

Still sounds good enough when you just want something fun to read. I'll have to remember that. Great review!

Rhianna said...

Thanks Melissa, it wasn't bad by any means it was just one of those reads where I felt like sooooo much more could have been written and wasn't. It's novella length so I kind of expected it but was really hoping to be wrong.

I was looking at Drake's site and she has another fairy tale retelling for free on her site I might check out. I'm such a sucker for those.

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